ECONOMYNEXT – The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) will reject any constitution that does not have wide national consensus including that of the Tamil people, TNA leader R Sambanthan said.
The MP made this remark in a speech declaring the TNA’s and the Illankai Tamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK)’s decision to vote against the 20th amendment to the constitution.
In the second reading of the 20th amendment bill debate today, the senior Tamil politician told parliament that the Tamil community has consistently given their mandate for a new constitution. The democratic verdict of the people in the North and East since 1956 must be respected, he said.
“We have always endeavoured to make our decisions based on principles,” said Sambanthan.
“We will reject any constitution that does not have a substantial consensus of all the people including the Tamil People,” he added.
Sambanthan further said that the people of Sri Lanka have not given anyone a mandate to turn the country from a democracy to a dictatorship.
“A victory at an election by whatever majority does not give anyone the right to turn democracy into a dictatorship,” he said.
Sambanthan went on to say that Sri Lanka does not have a constitution that has been universally accepted by the people. The 1978 constitution was rejected by the people at every election since 1994 which means for about a quarter-century the country was being governed without a valid constitution, he added. (Colombo/Oct21/2020)